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UK Announces Removal Of All COVID-19 Travel Restrictions

Akinola Ajibola  
Updated March 15, 2022
This file photo shows a UK border sign welcoming passengers on arrival at Heathrow airport in west London. Ben FATHERS / AFP

 

The United Kingdom will remove the remaining restrictions on international travel for all passengers ahead of the Easter holidays, said UK Transport Secretary Grant Shapps.

In a statement on Monday, the UK said as one of the first major economies to remove all its remaining COVID-19 travel restrictions, it would be a landmark moment for passengers as well as the travel and aviation sector.

“From 4am Friday 18 March, all COVID-19 travel restrictions will be lifted, including the passenger locator form (PLF) for arrivals into UK, as well as all tests for passengers who do not qualify as vaccinated,” the statement said.

“This change, therefore, removes the need for unvaccinated passengers to take a pre-departure test and a day 2 post-arrival test.

“This step reflects the decisions taken by the government, as set out in the Living with COVID plan, and the success of the UK’s vaccine and booster rollout, with 86 per cent of the population having received a second dose and 67 per cent of the population with a booster or third dose.”

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Shapps, in his remarks, believes the announcement is a testament to the hard work the people have put in place to roll out the vaccine and protect each other.

“I said we wouldn’t keep travel measures in place for any longer than necessary, which we’re delivering on today (Monday) – providing more welcome news and greater freedom for travellers ahead of the Easter holidays,” he said.

“I look forward to continuing to work with the travel sector and partners around the world to keep international travel moving.”

UK Health and Social Care Secretary, Sajid Javid, on his part, credited the removal of the final restrictions to the success of the government’s vaccination programme which has seen more than eight out of 10 adults across the country boosted.

“As we learn to live with COVID-19, we’re taking further steps to open up international travel once again ahead of the Easter holidays.

“We will continue monitoring and tracking potential new variants and keep a reserve of measures that can be rapidly deployed if needed to keep us safe,” he said.